Holy Saturday

Holy Saturday
Matthew 27: 62-66 (NKJV)

On the next day, which followed the Day of Preparation, the chief priests and Pharisees gathered together to Pilate, saying, “Sir, we remember, while He was still alive, how that deceiver said, ‘After three days I will rise.’ Therefore command that the tomb be made secure until the third day, lest His disciples come by night and steal Him away, and say to the people, ‘He has risen from the dead.’ So the last deception will be worse than the first.”

Pilate said to them, “You have a guard; go your way, make it as secure as you know how.” So they went and made the tomb secure, sealing the stone and setting the guard.

On The Day of Preparation (Friday), Jews prepare for the Sabbath, which begins at sundown on Friday and continues until sundown on Saturday.  On Saturday, there is no work. No cooking.  No baking. No cleaning the house. It's a day of rest in the Lord.  A day to worship and reflect on the goodness of God.

What if you can't see the goodness of God? Consider for a moment how the disciples may have felt on that bleak Saturday morning.  Everything they knew and hoped for (and hoped in) was gone, silent, lying behind a stone (wall) in a cold tomb.  And what could they do? They had to sit with their sorrow. They had time and space to plumb the depths of their loss. A Sabbath of  mourning.

We often bury ourselves in business when grief knocks on our door.  We cook.  We clean. We mow the lawn.  Or, we do so for others.  We rarely hold closely the disquietude of our souls.  Today is a day to do just that, not to reach for platitudes or simple answers.  We know, but the disciples did not, that Sunday is coming.  

God, Creator of heaven and earth: Grant that, as the crucified body of your dear Son was laid in the tomb and rested on this holy Sabbath, so we may await with him the coming of the third day, and rise with him to newness of life; who now lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

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